Expat life in Nijmegen: Hanna, France

In the series "Expat Life in Nijmegen", expats talk about their lives in the Netherlands' oldest city. How did they end up here? What do they do in daily life here and what do they think of the city and its surroundings? 

Here's the story of Hanna Ferrari from France...

"I moved to Nijmegen for a bachelor’s degree in Arts & Culture Studies at Radboud University. At the moment, I’m in my first year. I’m originally from Nice in France, which is a city by the sea. Before moving here, I was a bit nervous that I would miss the water – that is probably also why the Waal beach is my favorite spot in Nijmegen.

The beach was one of the first places in the city that I went to during introduction week last summer, right after I had moved here. My group had a picnic at the beach and I really enjoyed that. It’s a nice place to hang out – especially now that it’s getting warmer. And, something I like in particular: you can watch the boats.

I have been obsessed with boats my entire life and I simply love the ugly ones – like the cargo ships that carry things across the river. In Nice, we have a lot of nice boats and I’m used to seeing them – but I’m not used to seeing the ugly ones. No one appreciates them, but I do. And they are very pretty to me.

Before I moved here, I didn’t have any expectations of this new place – and I’m glad I didn’t. I fell in love with everything here. I met so many good people in the last year – I think that definitely makes the experience of living in a new place better. There are a lot of other internationals in my study and I think that definitely enriches the experience.

Because we are all from different parts of the world, I feel like we are all very connected. In my program, we have a lot of discussions where people bring their personal opinion and their different experiences to the table. That’s something I appreciate a lot. We also have some Dutch people in my study and what struck me most about them was that they were all very welcoming and nice.

At the moment, I’m trying to learn Dutch. I would really like to speak the language. I downloaded Duolingo on my phone, but so far, I’m terrible at it. A couple of words stuck with me, like kaas, something you see a lot when you’re out in the city, but besides that, it’s still a work in progress. "

Studying & working in Nijmegen

Nijmegen has a lot to offer in terms of studying, working and business. The oldest city in The Netherlands is also one of the largest student cities in the country. The city presents itself as a leading global player in solving social issues and problems. With its significant position in the Health & High Tech sector, Nijmegen belongs to the international top when it comes to improving the quality of life, healthcare and the development of high-quality technology for various social applications.

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